Waatea News Update

News from Waatea 603 AM, Urban Maori radio, first with Maori news

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Location: Auckland, New Zealand

Monday, November 30, 2009

Preserved heads welcomed back to Te Papa

Te Papa is working on finding where the latest repatriated koiwi and toi moko originally came from.

A powhiri is being held at the museum about now to welcome the remains of 30 ancestors from five museums in Wales, Scotland, Ireland and Sweden.

Acting chief executive Michelle Hippolite says the museum is now researching how the bones and four tattooed preserved heads ended up so far from home.

“We seek to understand more about the people that received or collected or gifted the skeletal remains and the toi moko to the museums we’re repatriating them from. That can often tell us the place they were uplifted from It doesn’t always tell us they were from this iwi or that hapu but at least it gives us a sense of the area they were uplifted from,” Ms Hippolite says.

If the remains can't be identified and returned to their iwi, Te Papa has a special storage area for them.


The Maori Party is calling for a royal commission of inquiry into the criminal justice system.

Justice spokesperson Rahui Katene says both National and Labour take a "lock them up" approach to offending.

She says a commission, as was first suggested by Ombudsman Mel Smith two years ago, will allow fresh ideas to come into the debate.

“We need to have a new justice strategy, a kaupapa Maori justice strategy where we look at doing things from a Maori value base. We want to look at restoring and transforming, not imprisoning and forgetting,” Mrs Katene says.

She says because of a looming crisis in prisons the Maori Party has reluctantly supported legislation to allow the holding of prisoners in police cells.


Tuhoe kaumatua Wharehuia Milroy is hailing a new history of the iwi as a significant contribution to the tribe's future.

Encircled Lands by Judith Binney covers Te Urewera for 1820 to 1921, detailing how the Crown stripped Tuhoe people of their land and and autonomy.

Professor Milroy says it's the culmination of years of intense research and will be of great benefit for Tuhoe now and in the future.

“They will be much clearer as to their own history and relationships to the Crown and the way forward for them is to understand those relationships and how they begin to deal with the Crown and everyone else within this country," Professor Milroy says.

Much of the material Professor Binney prepared for Tuhoe's Waitangi Tribunal hearings is included in the book.

Encircled Lands was launched today at Waikerekere marae in Ruatoki, and it's available in bookshops now.


The new chair of the Maori fisheries trust says official attitudes are some of the biggest impediments to creating a Maori brand.

Ngahiwi Tomoana from Ngati Kahungunu wants to see iwi work together to market their seafood to the world.

He says creating Maori branding around exports and tourism would help sell New Zealand as a whole, but the government's position can be seen from the way it is handling the current major opportunity to showcase the country, the Rugby World Cup.

“There's a 40 to 50 page commentary from the Minister for Rugby, Murray McCully There’s not one single mention of the word Maori in it. That’s what we’re up against when we’re looking at a Maori brand. Maori, Pakehja, Hainamana, when they eave here they love dropping into a haka when they’re in Europe or America but when it comes to take the Maori with them, then they don't want to know,” Mr Tomoana says.


The manager of a programme aimed at lifting Maori and Pacifica students’ achievement through parental involvement says what's taught at school needs to be complemented by what's learned in the home.

Ariana Williams says the ASB Trust has promised to fund the Mutukaroa pilot at Auckland’s Sylvia Park Primary School for five years.

It includes development of a resource centre at the school so parents can track their child’s progress and learn how assessment works.

She says school report cards are a poor substitute for an ongoing relationship with parents.

Ariana Williams, who is originally from Taipa in the far north, has been working at Sylvia Park Primary for the past three years.


Plunket fundraising CD Merry Xmas Baby has gone platinum.

The collection, which includes contributions by House of Shem, Wirimako Black, Annie Crummer, Hollie Smith and other, was launched at the end of September and has already sold more than 15,000 copies through music stores, online and through Plunket's 550 branches.

National cultural advisor Danial Hauraki says the artists responded to the violent death of Rotorua toddler Nia Glassie and wanted to help the organisation to do more to help young Maori mothers.

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